Williams Lake city council has directed Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex staff to deliver choices through its summer camp programs. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Williams Lake looking to expand summer day camp options

City council wants both licensed and unlicensed programs offered in 2021

Both licensed and unlicensed summer camp programs will be offered by the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex (CMRC) in 2021.

Last fall the director of community services Ian James removed the existing childcare license for the Boitanio Day Camp, saying it limited the number of possible participants to 54.

The move raised concerns in the community because parents can only apply for the BC Affordable Child Care Subsidy when a program is licensed.

During a committee of the whole meeting Tuesday, Jan. 19, James said with an unlicensed recreation day camp program the CMRC could offer more spaces and look at expanding its existing Affordable Recreation Card (ARC) subsidy program to include recreation day camps.

When Coun. Jason Ryll asked what the difference was between licensed and unlicensed, James responded that recreation facilities still have to adhere to the standards of licensed programs such as having first aid and RCMP background checks.

Read more: Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex pauses all indoor group fitness due to COVID-19 restrictions

After a lengthy discussion, council directed CRMC staff to prepare a report on providing licensed and unlicensed programs as well as a municipal subsidy program.

Kaitlyn Atkinson, manager of recreation and leisure services, prepared a second report that council received at its regular meeting, Tuesday, Jan. 26.

A projected budget to run both programs showed a licensed day camp with a revenue of $70,564 and expenses of $52,083 for a net of $18,481, and an unlicensed day camp program with a projected budget revenue of $23,000 and expenses $19,283, with a net of $3,716.

Atkinson noted if the ARC subsidy is added to the unlicensed program, a minor decrease in revenue would be expected.

Council approved the development of concurrent licensed and unlicensed summer camp programs.

Statistics listed in the report from James noted during the Boitanio summer day camp that ran for 12 weeks, starting June 29 and ending the week of Sept 9, 2020, 85 children attended at least one day of summer camp and 14 of those received BC Affordable Child Care Subsidy.

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